What If Wednesday
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Today’s “What If Wednesday” question: “What if the Winx visit [insert world name]?”

The Winx have traveled all over the Magic Dimension, but they haven’t been to every world. Do they have to? Of course not. Not all the places mentioned in the show (or the comics) have to be important.

Still, it means Rainbow can expand Winx Club‘s physical universe without even adding to it. They can use what they already have. (That’s the theme of this feature, right?) Here are some known worlds the Winx have never seen.

Dolona

Winx 1X02 - Eleanor of DolonaRemember this shy fairy: Eleanor of Dolona? Griselda made her sweat in “Welcome to Magix” (1X02) when she couldn’t find her name right away on the new student roster. Where’s Dolona? What does it look like? Is Eleanor the princess? She may not look like it, but most characters addressed as “So-and-So of World” tend to be royalty or nobility.

Orez, Fallat, and Rot

In “Professor Avalon’s Secret” (2X09), Griffin said when these three “sacred” planets align, it’s thought to be a bad omen. Why? What’s the story behind them? And what would happen if they aligned again? I know the prophecy of Serius Facetus was a joke, but as the Wise Woman of Calavera said, “With every legend comes a bit of truth.”

Romulea

Lots of royals and nobles attended Eraklyon’s millennium celebration in season three, but one pair was mentioned by name: King Wanetka and Queen Linley of Romulea. Same question: Where’s Romulea, and what does it look like?

Callisto

Winx 1X02 - Varanda of CallistoI saved this world for last because it’s the most significant. Remember what happened after that scene with Eleanor and Griselda? Bloom become nervous because she wasn’t on the roster, but Stella had already thought of a plan. The princess of Domino would pretend to be the princess of Callisto, Varanda. But Griselda and Faragonda saw through the lie, and Bloom fessed up at the end of the episode.

I don’t know about you, but I’d love to meet the real Varanda. I bet she doesn’t look anything like Bloom! How would she feel knowing someone impersonated her to get into Alfea, and her friend Stella orchestrated the scam?

That’s it for today. To my fellow American Winx fans, I hope you had a safe and happy 4th of July! I know what I’m having for dinner tonight: leftover barbecue chicken wings!

What If Wednesday
28

Sorry for skipping “What If Wednesday” last week. I bit off more than I could chew by trying to finish the “Yin and Yang” post, chapter two of my fanfic, and this post around the same time. Hopefully, I can get back on track now.

Today’s “What If” question: “What if Specialists and Paladins could have advanced forms like fairies do?”

What do I mean by “advanced forms?” I don’t mean transformations, per se, but that depends on the class. Specialists and Paladins are different from each other — at least they’re supposed to be. Rainbow hasn’t clearly shown the difference between them, so their development could be a way to distinguish them from each other.

Specialists

Almost eight years ago (yes, it’s been that long), I wrote a post asking what in Magix Specialists are. Griffin calls them “wizards” in “A Friendship Sundered” (1X08), and the season two website called Codatorta a “magician.” Those terms don’t make sense because Specialists don’t have magic powers. (Helia does, but they probably run in the family.)

Specialists just seem to be all-purpose heroes. They fight monsters, save princesses, carry out secret missions, etc. We can guess Redfountain isn’t the only place that trains them, since in season five, Roy wore a different uniform designed for underwater missions.

Is that all there is to them? Maybe not. The word specialist means “a person highly skilled in a specific and restricted field.” In some Winx dubs, the Specialists are called Experts. Same idea.

The first time I remember hearing “Specialist” in this sense is in season six. In “A Monster Crush” (6X21), Tecna’s mother Magnethia asks Timmy what field he specializes in. Aisha says he’s “a pro at mechanic design, navigation, and all-around problem solving.” I’d add strategy to that list, too. He’s used all of those skills in missions over the years.

What about the other Specialists? Do they have specific skills other than fighting? I can’t think of any. Riven was good at picking locks, but he probably learned that growing up. (The season two website said he was “skilled as a thief.”) Maybe Timmy’s the special one. 😛

Thirteen years and seven seasons later, it’s still not clear what Specialists are. That doesn’t mean they’re worthless, though. The Magic Universe needs non-magic beings, too. Magic fails sometimes and isn’t appropriate for every situation. Plus, the Specialists have always known more about magic creatures and how to handle them.

What would an advanced Specialist form look like? Maybe we’ve seen it already. Since Sky’s squad got new outfits and weapons in season six, maybe they graduated. If so, what will their futures be like? How will they use what they’ve learned?

Paladins

Nex and Thoren may be new to the Boys Club, but Paladins aren’t new to the series. Rainbow first used the term “Paladin” in the original Winx season two. In “The Mysterious Stone” (2X07), when Avalon takes off his hood and reveals himself, Bloom, Stella, and Aisha yell, “It’s the Paladin who rescued us from the Trix!”

When they met Avalon in “Magic Bonding” (2X05), he was wearing armor and a pair of angel wings. Some fans think that Avalon was the impostor sent by Darkar. Here’s a question, though: how did those three know he was a Paladin? He didn’t tell them. They said it like it was common knowledge — or it was the first term that popped into their heads.

4Kids tried to expand on the concept of Paladins. In “Professor Avalon’s Secret” (2X09) — a.k.a. “The Angel of Doom” — Avalon says, “There are 10,000 Paladins with the same wings I have.” Yes, I know the 4Kids dub doesn’t count, but why couldn’t Rainbow keep this idea?

The word paladin means a “knightly or heroic champion.” That sounds like the Specialists, but here’s an interesting detail: it has a religious background. Medieval legends talk about an order of Paladins called The Twelve Peers who served Charlemagne, a devout Christian emperor of Rome. (I’m not condoning his actions; I’m just stating historical facts.)

Fantasy games like Dungeons & Dragons and World of Warcraft have adapted this by making Paladins “holy warriors.” They embody chivalry, purity, and light, and they have magic abilities like healing. That sounds like Avalon, doesn’t it? His wings radiated a powerful light, and he was able to restore the Winx’s energy.

No one would describe Nex and Thoren as “chivalrous” and “pure,” though. (Maybe Thoren, but not Nex.) That’s fine, though, because it means they have room for character development. I’d love to see them become holy warriors.

Rainbow could easily make Avalon’s winged form an advanced Paladin form. How would they earn it? A year at Light Rock Monastery? A character arc where they have to confront their inner darkness? Imagine the possibilities!

That’s it for today’s “What If Wednesday.” I’m not sure what I’ll talk about next time, but I have a list of topics already. Stay tuned.

Musings & Rants
11

Yes, I have a brother. I know I don’t talk about him much, but he used to watch Winx Club, too. He stopped just because it wasn’t on anymore. That was back in the 4Kids days.

Last year, we got into a long conversation about the show. I was surprised by how much he remembered. He still knew the names of most of the main characters, the three schools in Magix, and the villains (he called Valtor “Balfour,” but close enough). He also remembered small details like how Flora gets treated like a piñata most of the time (his words, not mine).

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I’ve talked to him about the show a few times since then. He says he didn’t have a favorite Winx, but he liked Musa a lot. First of all, he liked her relationship with — no, not Riven (he hated him)  — her father Ho-Boe. Second, he liked that she wasn’t just one of the Winx, but she also had a dream of becoming a musician. That gave her more depth than the others.

As for the guys, he thinks they were all useless and unnecessary. They were just “Ken dolls.” I managed to get him to pick a favorite, anyway: Brandon. Why? He liked his weapon, and he admired him for being able to put up with Stella. 😛 (Again, his words.)

During that first conversation, I told him a spinoff called World of Winx was coming soon (back when we thought it would air in the spring). He was so interested, he said he might watch it! That got me excited! Could this lure him back into the Winx Club universe?

Nope.

As soon as I said the Winx are still the main characters, he said he’ll pass. He doesn’t wanna watch another show “from Bloom’s perspective.” Why focus on them again when there are so many background characters whose stories haven’t been told?

I know other fans feel the same way. They’ve talked about wanting to see spinoffs about the guys, a new fairy club, or even the Trix. He said he wouldn’t mind one about the villains, but he thinks the evil trio has been “played out.” (I guess he felt the Trix were overused even in seasons 1-3.)

But what he really wants to see is a spinoff about the older characters like Faragonda, Griselda, Griffin, Saladin, Oritel and Marion, etc. What were they like when they were younger? How did they get where they are today?

Also, how and when were the three schools founded? What was Magix like before they were built? Rainbow’s never answered those questions, but they’d help build the mythology of the series.

I told him the Winx went back in time to old Alfea in season seven. They met young Faragonda, saw what the school used to be like (complete with uniforms), and met the previous headmistress Mavilla. His response was, “A whole season of that, please.” He thinks it’ll never happen, though, because it probably wouldn’t sell dolls.

What do you think? Would you watch my brother’s dream spinoff? What other Winx characters do you wanna see a show about?

 

Episode Reviews
20

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I’m going back to my old review format from now on. Essays are boring to read, and they’re not my style. 😛

Like the last review, I wrote this after finishing the episode and before moving the next one. Assume I haven’t watched any others yet. No spoilers, please!

EPISODE BREAKDOWN

Next stop on the Trix’s world domination tour is the Zaltora (I think) School for Psychic Arts. It’s another easy win. They bewitch the school’s magic crystal — conveniently located right on top of the building  — and the students become their mind slaves. Then the Trix get a message from Selina, who says she has a plan to get rid of Bloom.

Let’s see what the Winx’s boyfriends are up to. (Forgot about them, didn’t you? 😛 ) Oh, they’re “training” in Aisha’s Morphix gym. That’s great.

capture_013_21052014_152649_468Meanwhile for the Winx, it’s time for potionology class. Palladium shows how it only takes a few drops of potion to break a transformation curse. Those three poor freshmen — Evie, Laurie, and Carol — are frogs no more. Then, with a potion boosted by Roxy’s magic, Palladium turns Griffin the crow back into herself.

The Winx are so busy watching, they almost forget to ask him about Eldora’s flower! Sadly, he doesn’t know what kind it is, either. But he knows who Eldora is! She once taught floral magic in Alfea’s greenhouse, which is now locked inside their vault. Flora can’t wait to go there!

Back at Cloud Tower, the Trix aren’t keen on Selina’s plan. If she’s Bloom’s friend, what if she betrays them? They decide to trust her anyway. After all, they’ll be watching her the whole time through Griffin’s Magic Eye.

capture_007_18052014_101846_158Before the Winx head to the vault, Selina and the boys show up. Selina lies about getting separated from Bloom back in Egypt, how Eldora’s her fairy godmother, and how she wants to help the Winx find her. Sky’s suspicious, but of course Bloom believes every word.

Selina’s plan moves to phase #2 inside the greenhouse. She secretly poisons Flora with cursed pollen, then turns a few plants into monsters. When she pretends to know an antidote to cure Flora, Bloom agrees to take her to the potion lab. She keeps one of the monsters busy while Selina whips up an even more potent poison.

capture_003_21052014_151938_565Bloom’s just about to pour it into Flora’s mouth…but Helia knocks it out of her hand just in time.

A little earlier, Sky had gone to the nurse’s office, where Griffin, Palladium, and Faragonda were. Griffin had warned them that Selina’s working with the Trix. Feeling guilty for trusting her (and almost poisoning her friend), Bloom decides to leave Alfea…and the Winx Club. (More on my reaction to that later.)

OVERALL THOUGHTS

I liked this episode a lot more than the last one. It had a lot more action, a good amount of drama, and slightly better dialogue (most of the time). Plus, any time there’s a potionology class, I’m a little biased. Potionology’s my favorite subject. 🙂

This will sound morbid, but the poisoning scenes were my favorite. They made the episode feel more tense, like the Winx were actually in danger for once! Of course I knew Flora wasn’t gonna die, but I still got nervous when Bloom opened that potion! I even yelled, “No, don’t!” or something like that. Well done, Nickbow. You got me!  😛

Next up in the Magic Marathon: “Broken Dreams.” Flora keeps researching Eldora’s flower. Bloom goes home to Gardenia, where, thanks to Selina, she has to stop a vampire invasion. Stay tuned for the next review!

There’s more! Click to read my thoughts while watching this episode!

Musings & Rants
13

capture_008_04112013_105429_945Last month, Roxy made her season six debut in “The Flying School.” Yes, she didn’t do much. But what she did might have revealed her role in this season.

The first sign: Bloom remembered her. That was the first time anyone’s acknowledged Roxy in twenty-four episodes! Of course, it might be the only time this season. But at least the Winx finally needed her again.

Sorta. She would have told them about the Trix, but they found out on their own. Still, they were willing to ask for her help. Maybe they’ll do it again.

The bonus for her was making a new friend. Someone’s gotta look after Griffin the crow; who better than Roxy? Plus, since her magic is strongest on animals, she might be able to break the Trix’s spell. I want to see her browsing books or asking her teachers (even Daphne) for ways to change Griffin back. Who knows — maybe the Winx will help. (Seven-fairy convergence?)

capture_014_04112013_105744_076How does this affect Roxy’s future? Well, I doubt Nickbow’s trying to readmit her into the Winx Club. She’s still a supporting character. And she’s just helping them indirectly — once they kick the Trix out, Cloud Tower will need their headmistress.

Whatever happens, this Roxy fan is glad to see her step out of the background. And since other non-Winx fairies have transformed this season, maybe she’ll get to, too. I hope so!